Bill Gates

Essay by ankHigh School, 10th gradeA+, May 2005

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Born on Oct. 28, 1955, Gates grew up in Seattle with his two sisters. Their father, William H. Gates II, is a Seattle attorney. Their late mother, Mary Gates, was a schoolteacher, University of Washington regent, and chairwoman of United Way International. Gates attended public elementary school and the private Lakeside School. There, he discovered his interest in software and began programming computers at age 13. In 1973, Gates entered Harvard University as a freshman, where he lived down the hall from Steve Ballmer, now Microsoft's chief executive officer. While at Harvard, Gates developed a version of the programming language BASIC for the first microcomputer - the MITS Altair. In his junior year, Gates left Harvard to devote his energies to Microsoft, a company he had begun in 1975 with his childhood friend Paul Allen. Guided by a belief that the computer would be a valuable tool on every office desktop and in every home, they began developing software for personal computers.

Gates' foresight and his vision for personal computing have been central to the success of Microsoft and the software industry. Gates was married on Jan. 1, 1994, to Melinda French Gates. They have three children.

Age 13 1968 Bill Gates and Paul Allen (his classmate) formed a programming group. Age 14 1969 - Bill Gates & Paul Allen make $4,200 writing scheduling programs for their school. Age 15 1970 - Gates began also working on computers at University of Washington campus. Age 17 1972 - Gates & Allen started a company called Traf-O-Data (produced a small computer that measured traffic flow) Grossed $20,000 from this business. Age 17 1972 - TRW (defense contractor) offered Gates a job fixing bugs. Gates became a serious programmer. Age 19 1974 - At Harvard Gates keeps up the fascination for computers. That...

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